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Charlotte 600 Race Preview

Written by Gabriel Tsui, Edited by Vyas Ponnuri

After an eventful All Star weekend, we head into one of the biggest weekends of the year in American Motorsport, with the NASCAR field arriving at Concord, North Carolina for the Charlotte 600, one of the prime time events of the weekend. 

Returning from the All Star Race, can Ford extend their momentum, or would the other two manufacturers bounce back?

Track Preview

The Charlotte Motor Speedway is located in Concord, North Carolina. The track hosts two races every season, one in the regular season, and one in the playoffs. 

However, the playoffs race uses the road course layout, while the regular season race uses the oval layout. The quad oval layout has a length of 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometres), with a banking of 24 degrees on the turns, and a banking of five degrees on the straights.

This is the one and only race on the NASCAR calendar where the race is split into four different stages, with 100 laps in each stage. The drivers will race 400 laps around the track, totalling a distance of 600 miles (965 kilometres) driven around the track. 

This race is also hosted on the same day as the Indianapolis 500, the flagship IndyCar race, with a few drivers attempting double duty, competing in both races. This year, Kyle Larson will be attempting this feat with Arrow McLaren in IndyCar, and Hendrick Motorsport in NASCAR.

The current weather forecast shows that there will be a possibility of rain, therefore a delay might be in place. However, if all goes well, the race will commence on Sunday, May 26th, at 18:00 ET (15:00 PT, 00:00 CET).

Race Predictions

In recent years, this has been a track where the Toyotas perform better than their competition. They have won five of the last ten races, with the most recent from 2022, won by none other than Denny Hamlin. 

The Toyotas haven’t won a race since the end of April, where Hamlin took a win in Dover. If there is any track perfect for a Toyota bounce back race, Charlotte would be the perfect place to do so.

On the other hand, the Fords have a convincing case for the win. They have the most recent race win from Charlotte, courtesy of Ryan Blaney. Their recent good run of form led by Brad Keselowski’s win in Darlington, and Joey Logano’s win in North Wilkesboro shows they still have the pace and strength to compete with rival manufacturers.

All of this combined with the fact that Chevrolet has been on a slump, alongside being short handed given that Ricky Stenhouse Jr has been suspended, and Kyle Larson on double duty, it is most probable that either Toyota or Ford take the win at one of the most prestigious races in American Motorsport.


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